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My name is Angie Winters. I have long red hair and am covered in freckles. I’m in the seventh grade and I am a mad scientist. I’m on the verge of finding the cure for freckles.
I see those girls with the flawless skin and only want to be just like them. Once I find the cure, I can be. And so can everyone else who is cursed with this hideous disease.
So far, my research hasn’t gone very far. I learned that lemon juice lightens freckles. I’ve been using that for a while now. I saw a small amount of results, but nothing drastic. I’ve decided I’m going to invent the final cure. To rid the world of these unsightly blemishes once and for all.
I spent years mixing ingredients together and testing my concoctions, but it never seems to work. I had become famous for my search, though, over time. I had a good portion of the world’s population in anticipation for the cure.
It was two years later, my freshman year in high school, when something I could have never expected happened.
An upperclassmen girl I didn’t recognize stopped at my locker during passing time while I was getting my English textbook.
“Angie Winters? You’re the one looking for the cure to freckles?” She asked. I looked at her. The first thing I noticed was that she had the disease.
“Look,” I said to her impatiently, “I haven’t found the cure quite yet. But I’m close, I assure you.”
She just looked at me quizzically. “I’m not interested in your ‘cure’.”
But she had the disease. How could she not want it? I could not wrap my mind around it. “Why not? You have- you have-,” I stuttered, finding it hard to come out and tell her that she has the disease. She must not know that she has it, I thought. That was the only explanation.
“I have freckles? Yes, I am quite aware. I love my freckles. God gave you and I this amazing gift to be unique and you’re willing to just give it up? Even if you were to find some kind of solution, you weren’t meant to. If you think getting rid of freckles can somehow turn the human race into flawless, perfect people- ,” she said, as if reading my thoughts. She just made it sound bad. “-you are very wrong. You will only strip the world of some of the little identity and uniqueness we have left in this society where everyone wants to be the same. God makes nobody perfect. But he makes everyone different. So embrace what he gave you that makes you, you.” Her eyes bore deep inside of me, searching for something. They came back to the surface, as if giving up. She turned and walked away. I never got her name.
That night, I stumbled upon the cure. I was just doing what I’d been doing every day for years. I mixed something new, tested it on my freckly foot like usual, and within seconds, every freckle in that spot vanished. I gasped. The cure I had been searching for years for was sitting on the table in front of me. This is what I’d always wanted. But I couldn’t stop thinking about what that girl had said to me today.
The telephone rang, disrupting my epiphany.
“Hello?” I answered.
“Angie Winters, this is a Raegan Williams’ secretary,” Raegan Williams was the host of the popular talk show, The Raegan Show.
“She just wanted to check in and see how the cure was going.”
Raegan Williams had her secretary call me about every month. I suppose she wants to be the first to know when it’s done, I assume, so she can have me on her show. The cure is probably one of the most talked about things on planet Earth, right now. I told the secretary I had it completed, and jumped back from the phone when chaos erupted. It sounded like chaos on the other line. I accepted their invitation to be on the show the following week.
A week later, I sat in a too-comfy arm chair on stage with the cure in a glass bottle sitting on the table next to me. I nervously sipped the coffee they gave me. Raegan came jogging out onto the stage, then, and the audience cheered.
“You ready, darling?” Raegan asked me.
I nodded nervously.
“3,2,1!” The camera man shouted, and we were live.
“Welcome to the Raegan Show! Today we have a very special guest with us today. She’s the mastermind behind the cure for freckles, Angie Winters!” The crowd went wild. I took a deep breath, and forced a little smile and a wave.
Raegan sat down in the chair next to me and the crowd was silenced.
“So. It’s finally finished after all these years. And it makes a freckle disappear upon contact, you say? Care to demonstrate?” She asks pleasantly.
“Of course.” I force a smile, and stand from my chair with the cure in hand.
I held it out in front of me and just looked at it for a moment.
Then, I drop it to the floor.
The glass shattered into a million pieces around me. The only copy of the cure spilled with it. Running off the stage, seeping into the crevices of the wooden boards beneath my feet- it was gone.
The audience gasps in shock. No one knows what to say. The place is so quiet you’d be able to hear a pin drop.
I breathe in deep and my voice slices into the deadly silence. “I used to think freckles were a disease. As you must have. But the truth is, we were so very wrong. A friend from school spoke with me recently. She really changed my views on this subject. I have to admit, she made me feel pretty stupid for even thinking what I had been. She was right, though. Freckles are something to be celebrated. They can be a bright light in this crazy society where people want to be the same.” I laughed to myself, quoting the girl. “I once thought that this cure could make anyone and everyone perfect. But there is no such thing as perfect. So, embrace what he gave you that makes you, you. And you, are absolutely beautiful.”
Then, the crowd who I thought would hate me after doing what I did, broke into a roaring applause and standing ovation. I laughed, unbelievingly, taking it all in.
I could never forget that day at school and that nameless girl who not only changed my life, but changed the world. I will forever be a freckle face.